Saturday, September 6, 2014

The Yorba Cemetery - Yorba Linda, California

by Steve Reiss (Dalmdad Landscape Photography - and

 Visiting the Yorba Cemetery is difficult since it is only open 2 hours a month.  The Cemetery is is the second oldest cemetery in Orange County, only pre-dated by the mission cemetery at San Juan Capistrano.

The tour is worth your time, especially if you are interested in the history of Orange County.  The tour leader was a descendent of Bernardo Yorba, one of the most famous of the Californios, and the namesake of the cemetery, all the "Yorba" street names and Yorba Linda, itself.  We were also lucky enough to have some other descendants of the Yorba family on the tour.  The tour gives you a great understanding of what early California life was like.

Information on visiting the cemetery can be found at the OC Parks Page.  If you go, wear a hat, it gets mighty hot out there.

Don Bernardo Yorba - One of the Fathers of Orange County, circa 1800's
Florisa Dominguez, died 1894, age 32

Benigna Peralta (1851-1931)
Jose Negrete (1876-1929) - Local Laborer That Wanted
to Be Buried Overlooking the Train Tracks

A great grandson (still very old) of Sr. Andres de los Reyes Was On the Tour With Us

Frank Apalategui

The Giant Cross that Used to Project Upward
From Ambrosia's Stone is Long Gone

The Children's Corner

Dennis lived less than 6 months

Hanging Holly?

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Driving the June Lake Loop (CA158)

by Steve Reiss (Dalmdad Landscape Photography - and

June Lake, California - I can't believe its almost been a year since I took a long "solo" non-holiday weekend to drive across the Sonora Pass.  Ever since moving to California, I wanted to take the drive across the pass, but it is kind of out of the way and closed due to snow for several months a year.  So, it took me 9 years to finally do the drive.  Yet, despite achieving this personal goal, I wrote so little about the trip; though we have offered a large number of photos taken during that trip for sale on our website, especially of the Stanislaus River rapids and dramatic fall leaves at Lake Sabrina
Leaves Turning at Lake Sabrina
After crossing the pass, there is only one way home; driving down the US395 along the eastern slope of the Sierras. Having done that drive before, from Reno, NV, to Bridgeport, CA, to Mono Lake, to Bodie Ghost Town, to Bishop, and then down the Owens Valley, I did not expect to find any new gems that I had never seen before.  However, I did.  One was Lake Sabrina, in the mountains to the west of Bishop, CA and the other was June Lake Loop.

June Lake Loop is CA-158 in Mono County.  The north and south ends of the 16 mile loop road junction with US395 between Lee Vining and to the north and Mammoth Lakes to the south.

June Lake Loop From the Sky
The loop is at an elevation of around 7621 ft, about 1300 ft above the eastern Sierra valley floor, near Mono Lake.  

While the June Lake Loop encircles several lakes, the most scenic are Grant Lake and June Lake.  Grant Lake is the first lake you come upon when heading south.  Grant lake certainly has that alpine, above the tree line feel about it.

Grant Lake

Grant Lake

Grant Lake

Grant Lake
The temperature drop from the valley floor to lake level is quite noticeable and even more-so when in the shade of the mountains surrounding the lakes.  

In the shade on June Lake Loop
In the Shade of June Lake Loop
The temperature in the area never exceeds 72F.

There is a town of June Lake that acts as the tourist base for the lake.  The town of June Lake's population jumps from 629 to over 3100 during the summer. SR 158 from 3.5 miles north of June Lake to the northern junction with U.S. Highway 395 is closed during winters, typically from mid-December through mid-April.

View of the town of June Lake through the Trees

A lucky meet-up for me happened on this drive around the loop.  The government shutdown of 2013 was in progress and this resulted in most National Park and National Forest locations' restrooms being locked up.  Well, when you have to go, you have to go.  You find a place to pull over, run into the bushes and do your thing.  As I turned off the main road, I almost hit this deer that was crossing the side road.  She was a fine specimen and allowed me to follow her for a short while until her and her doe ran off into the woods.

Fawn and Doe